Paleo Life

It’s been a busy few weeks around here. The success of the paleo cupcakes for my husband’s birthday has sparked a renewed interest in paleo baking in the both of us. We loved making bread before this diet change and we’re excited to try some new techniques. 
This last week, we tried a paleo sandwich bread made using almond flour. The one thing I noticed right off was that since this bread has no gluten or more importantly, yeast in it, it comes together so much faster than standard sandwich bread. So, that’s a win! There’s no need for rise time, punching or kneading the dough; you basically mix it, pour it in the pan and bake! The downside to no yeast however, is that the finished product doesn’t rise very much. Vinegar and baking soda give it a slight boost, but for the most part, it comes out of the oven at the same height it went in. Drat. I was hoping for a nice, tall loaf of sandwich bread. What I got was a mini loaf, albeit a very tasty one. 


The flavor of the bread is awesome. It’s dense and slightly nutty, not too overpowering and would be perfect for sandwiches or toast, it just lacks height. I thought I could get a little more height out of it by separating the eggs and whipping the whites into medium peaks before folding them back in, but there was almost no difference in height between the two loaves. I did notice that the bread with the whipped egg whites came out a little less dense, which was nice, but not the result I was hoping for. Back to the drawing board on that one. 

I can confirm however, that as written, this bread makes amazing toast. I eat it with a little bit of butter (not paleo, I know, but it doesn’t bother me, so I’m going to keep eating it). My husband loves it with his morning eggs, so win-win!

On the upside, I’ve got (almost) paleo chocolate chip cookies AND fudgy brownies. So, so good. 

Both are made with almond flour and organic chocolate chips. The way I made them isn’t exactly paleo compliant because the chocolate chips do contain processed white sugar, but for now, that’s going to have to do. Once I run out of chocolate chips, I’ll look into making them 100% paleo.

For the cookies, I follow the recipe exactly. I did experiment by adding one cup of dried cranberries and one teaspoon of cinnamon in order to make something close to my oatmeal craisin cookies, EPIC! I’ll have to take a picture next time, I was too hungry to wait this last batch. 


For the brownies, I tried them exactly as written the first time around, but they were too cakey for my liking. I prefer my brownies to be super fudgy and moist. I thought 3 eggs seemed like too many the first time I made them, so on my second try, I cut it down to 2 eggs and that was perfect!


We’re still on the hunt for a more sandwich friendly bread; I just got a tip about cassava flour, which is already on its way to me, so hopefully next time, I’ll be able to report a success!

Whole 30, The End!

Sorry I didn’t post on the last week of my Whole 30, I had a terrible cold and just didn’t feel up to it. I ate mostly soup and bone broth that week, so you didn’t miss much. 

We made it! We’re actually almost a week past the end of our Whole 30, and it feels amazing!!! I lost just over 6 pounds in 30 days and I can’t even describe how awesome I feel. My skin is clear, my digestive issues have sorted themselves out and I’m even sleeping better at night! 

So, now what? Do I just go straight back to eating how I was before? What’s my plan for the future? Well, the husband and I have decided to make a major dietary change and go paleo permanently. Whoa. Wait. What on Earth does that even mean?The idea is simple, paleo refers to our caveman ancestors and the diet essentially consists of things that could be hunted or gathered, so lots of lean meats, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds. Most importantly, the focus of paleo is cutting out processed foods and grains altogether. The paleo diet is very similar to Whole 30, but it is less restrictive on some things, like sugar. The Whole 30 does not allow any added sugars at all, except fruit juice. Paleo allows natural sugars such maple syrup and honey, which means we can have some sweets, (yay!). 

We haven’t decided yet how closely we want to stick to paleo guidelines. Right now, we’re considering a slightly modified version and allowing ourselves some dairy, because neither of us have any issues digesting it. We do plan to allow for cheat meals every now and then. Notice I didn’t say cheat “days”. I’ve always found the cheat day mindset to be particularly dangerous to any diet plan. I tend to go overboard on everything when it’s a whole cheat day. A cheat “meal” mindset allows us to have one non-compliant meal and then go right back to doing what we’re supposed to do as opposed to saying “well, I had a non compliant breakfast, may as well keep eating junk!”. 

Take this weekend, for instance, we went out to dinner for my husband’s birthday on Saturday. That was our cheat meal. The whole rest of the day, we stayed on plan. Before, I would have said “screw it, let’s ruin the whole day!”, and I’d have paid dearly for it the next. This way, we had some fun and didn’t feel guilty about it or make ourselves ill. Win! 

Speaking of birthdays, you may be wondering what kind of birthday doesn’t have a cake… not this one! I got a fabulous cookbook and made paleo compliant chocolate cupcakes with an equally compliant French buttercream. No one who tried them even realized they weren’t normal cupcakes until I told them, I’d say that’s a damn fine recipe. 


Ok, so you had a birthday cake. What about the Super Bowl?!? Don’t worry, I had that covered too! We made paleo friendly wings from NomNomPaleo and crispy smashed potatoes

I even got to have left over wings for dinner tonight with some roasted cauliflower and steamed green beans! Note: green beans are a controversial item on paleo; they’re legumes which technically aren’t allowed, but I say if it’s good enough for Whole 30, they’re good enough for paleo, since they’re mostly pod.


I think that’s just about it for now, more recipes and meal plans to come!

 

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